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EU ombudsman’s ruling in EU’s favor on EBGA online gambling complaint seems a small wonder

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The European Union’s Ombudsman office has ruled against the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) with regard to a complaint that the group filed opposing EU, the previous year,  over its deliberate dropping of cases involving cross-border (but within the EU) offering of online gambling services.

The EGBA filed its grievances against the EU back in December of 2016 in response to  EU falling short of enforcing the EU’s cross-border codes referring the online-gambling services. The group cited several instances of the EU’s failure to intervene or force compliance by member countries. The group’s complaint leaned heavily on the notorious Article 56 of the TFEU, along with other regulations.

However, the EGBA’s complaint also ran into last year’s decision by the European Union to halt the attempts to enforce Article 56 in the face of defiant opposition from a majority of EU member states. Those countries have persistently sought to block cross-border services, often in the interest of protecting state-run lottery, casino, and other gambling operations.

It was a small wonder that whatsoever the EU would dismiss, the EGBA’s claim.

Here is the Ombudsman’s Office’s complete statement on the dismissal:

The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) which represents online gaming and betting operators in the European Union, made a number of infringement complaints to the European Commission arguing that the regulatory framework for online gambling in certain Member States was not in line with EU law.

As EGBA was concerned that the Commission did not follow up on these complaints, and did not engage in an open dialogue with stakeholders, it turned to the European Ombudsman.

The Ombudsman inquired into the case. In the course of the inquiry, the Commission decided to close all the infringement complaints. The Ombudsman noted that the Commission has wide discretion on whether and how to pursue infringement cases and that the decision taken fell within the boundaries of that discretion. The Ombudsman inspected the Commission’s files concerning the several Member States in order to evaluate the Commission’s procedural handling of the infringement complaints in the light of the relevant rules and principles. On the basis of the inspection, she found that the Commission had not committed maladministration. Therefore, the Ombudsman closed the case.

“Wide discretion,” as interpreted by the EU, continues to mean, “We don’t want to enforce our own rules.” The problem is that the EU’s failure to enforce its own rules in a crux issue of online trade (online gambling) represents the top of a slippery slope; it’s not at all an absurd extension to see such EU inaction extended to other forms of online trade, and even into certain forms of land-based commerce. (You’ll read about such an example in a follow-up story originating in Hungary.)

Ever since France and Italy first won EU approval to firewall their countries’ online-gambling services, the entirety of the EU has been involved in a slow race to the bottom. It’s going to take a long time to pay out, but one of the likeliest scenarios is that every single European state will end up with its own protected set of services and operators. That’s going to play hell with Euro-based online poker for a few years, somewhere down the road, until an even later date when some form of complex, pan-European liquidity sharing pool can be created.

That, though, isn’t the present. For now, it’s a giant “Tough titties” from the EU regarding online-gambling restrictions and prohibitions that really should be covered by EU oversight.

According to Maarten Haijer, the Secretary-General of EGBA, “Infringements proceedings in this sector have become a complete mess since the Commission decided to wash its hands of its responsibility to ensure online gambling regulation in the Member States is in line with EU law. While the Ombudsman’s decision is disappointing, it does confirm that the Commission’s decision to close these infringement cases was a political one. If the Commission is not taking seriously its responsibility to uphold EU law and ensure Member States, like Hungary, comply with EU Court of Justice rulings, then who will?”

Source: flushdraw.net


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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Perform Group rebrands as DAZN Group

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Perform Group rebrands as DAZN GroupReading Time: 2 minutes

 

Business to be consolidated into two brands: DAZN and Perform Content

 

Perform Group, the digital leader in sports media, announced that it will be called DAZN Group and consolidated into two distinct brands: DAZN and Perform Content. Executive Chairman, John Skipper, said: “We have two enormous growth opportunities but they are distinct from each other. Consequently, we are re-organising to create dedicated management and standalone teams each with a clear and focused agenda and mission. We have an incredible opportunity to exploit significant shifts in sports media to drive great products to sports fans and create a company with ever more influence on the new sports media universe”.

DAZN will be the consumer-facing division, including DAZN itself, the world’s first dedicated live and on-demand sports streaming service, and some of the largest sports websites in the world, such as Goal.com, SportingNews, and Spox.com. The content and traffic of these websites and apps will focus increasingly on acquiring subscribers for and driving traffic to DAZN, as well as serving fans with fantastic sports content. DAZN will also use its combined assets and inventory to create market-leading, innovative packages for advertisers.

DAZN Group will be led by CEO and founder Simon Denyer and he will be joined by a new CFO, Stuart Epstein. Stuart has a 20-year track record at Morgan Stanley and has previously served as CFO for NBC Universal. James Rushton takes on a wider role as Chief Revenue Officer, responsible for all products, revenue, and marketing.

Perform Content will be responsible for the group’s B2B activities – continuing to provide world class sports data, news and video to the world’s leading broadcasters, digital companies and sports books. Perform Content will be given more resources and autonomy to invest in its primary products, such as Opta, Watch & Bet, and RunningBall.

The CEO of Perform Content will continue to be Ross MacEacharn and he will be joined by Ashley Milton as Perform Content Chief Financial Officer.

The two brands will each have their own governance and leadership but report into one board, chaired by John Skipper. DAZN and Perform Content will collaborate closely on a commercial basis. DAZN will use Perform Content data to power its products. Perform Content will continue to leverage and add value to global rights acquired by DAZN.

DAZN Group CEO and founder, Simon Denyer, said: “Perform Group has been one of the defining companies of the sports industry over the last decade. The exceptional growth and execution of DAZN in its first seven markets means we need to focus our efforts around our primary growth engine. Our B2B division continues to grow but now is the time for it to have its own separate identity and investment plan. We are delighted that it will continue to use the Perform name.”

DAZN will remain the main rights holding company for the group including its long-term partnerships with strategic partners such as WTA, FIBA, CONMEBOL, Matchroom Boxing, NFL and EHF.

Sir Leonard Blavatnik’s Access Industries, the privately held group with global investments in multiple sectors, will continue to be the major shareholder of DAZN Group and support the growth of both brands.


Source: European Gaming Media

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ATG partners with USA’s biggest TV network for horse racing

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ATG partners with USA's biggest TV network for horse racingReading Time: 2 minutes

ATG has come to a partner agreement with TVG, the largest TV network for horse racing in USA.

 

Starting September 17, 45 million American households has will be given the possibility to bet on ATG‘s products.

“This is a unique possibility for ATG to reach out to horse racing bettors in USA and will also be a great way of showcasing the great sport we have here in Sweden” says Lars Nemeth, head of international sales at ATG.

TVG is a Los Angeles based company, founded in 1987. TVG has today two TV channels and broadcast up to 15 hours of horse racing daily to 45 million American cable and satellite households. Since 2009 TVG is a part of the Irish Paddy Power Betfair betting concern.

“TVG is a strong trademark on the American market and they broadcast around 50,000 races a year from around the world. The main intention with this cooperation agreement is of course to create revenue for both parts but like I said, I also see it as a unique possibility to showcase Swedish horse racing” says Lars Nemeth.

The TVG customers will be able to bet Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta and Daily Double right in to ATG’s Swedish pool.

“Swedish Trotting, Swedish Gallop and ATG will be able to deliver world class products, therefor it’s fantastic to be able to offer our viewers both broadcasts and betting from Sweden. Business wise and also editorial we’re emphasising on the best races Wednesday through Sunday. In our regular broadcasts we will have lots of live updates and latest news about the races and in cooperation with Kanal 75 show stories about both the sport of trotting and gallop in Sweden” says Stephen Kennelly, Vice President of Product and Exchange, TVG FanDuel Group US.

On the international betting market so called rakebacks, where bettors will receive discounts based on how much they bet, very common. However, in all of ATG’s partner agreements no rakebacks are allowed, also in this deal wth TVG.

“Both us and ATG are interested in creating a sustainable long term deal. TVG has basically the same broad spectrum of customers as ATG, we focus on incentivizing and gaining new and existing business by providing access to high quality content and service, not through high volume rebates to a limited audience.” says Stephen Kennelly.

Facts, TVG
• USA’s largest TV network for trot and gallop horse racing – reaches 45 million households.
• Owned by the betting concern Paddy Power Betfair, Irland.
• 320 employees, most of them at their TV head quarter in Los Angeles, California.
• Broadcasts around 50 000 races each year from around the world through their TV channels TVG (seven days a week) and TVG2 (five days). the channels are also available online (www.tvg.com) and through Apple TV, Chromecast, Amazon and Roku.
• Will be able to bet Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta and Daily Double starting September 17, 2018
• TV and marketing support in TVG1 and TVG2 from September 23.

Source: ATG


Source: European Gaming Media

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MansionBet is the headline partner of Ultimate Boxxer II

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MansionBet is the headline partner of Ultimate Boxxer IIReading Time: 2 minutes

 

In a continued push across the sporting industry, MansionBet announced their headline partnership of Ultimate Boxxer II.
Having sponsored a number of high profile UK boxers this year, including George Groves, Lee Selby and Dillian Whyte, their support of this thrilling event is a natural progression for the sports betting operator.

Taking place on 2nd November at the O2 Indigo in London, Ultimate Boxxer II follows the phenomenal success of their inaugural event earlier this year. The tournament sees eight highly rated British boxers in the light heavyweight division square off to achieve their career defining moment.

Additional entertainment and authority on the evening comes from boxing legends Paulie Malignaggi, Ricky Hatton, Anthony Crolla and BBC’s Charlie Sloth.

Shelly Suter Hadad, COO & Managing Director of Mansion, commented: “We are passionately invested in supporting UK-grown talent across the sporting world, and with the growing popularity of British Boxing, we are delighted to get involved with this innovative tournament.”

Benjamin Shalom, Managing Director of Ultimate Boxxer, commented: “We are really looking forward to developing Ultimate Boxxer as a strong gambling proposition. Mansion’s values and forward-thinking make them a perfect brand to develop this with us and we are really excited about the upcoming campaign.”

The partnership was brokered through leading sports creative & partnerships agency, Dark Horses; and promises to be a well-matched partnership between two rising star brands within their complimentary industries.

 

About Mansion:
Awarded ‘Online Casino Operator of the Year’ at the International Gaming Awards 2018, the Mansion Group has firmly established itself as a leading provider of online gambling and entertainment since their founding in 2003.
Mansion possess a broad portfolio of popular online casinos catering to all tastes and markets, with Casino.com acting as the flagship brand, and MansionCasino a UK top-performer. With the launch of MansionBet, the Mansion Group has diversified their product portfolio into the sports arena, leveraging the strength and brand awareness of the Mansion name across the industry.


Source: European Gaming Media

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